Get Up, Stand up, MARCH!

Submitted by George C. Brathwaite (PhD)
 Mia Mottley, Opposition Leader has issued a summons to Barbadians to march!

Mia Mottley, Opposition Leader has issued a summons to Barbadians to MARCH!

Everything is fine and dandy in Barbados. The economy is growing at a rate that would ensure jobs are available to all and sundry; local businesses are blossoming and foreign investors are rushing to our shores in droves with new projects. The society is at peace with itself while violent crime and indiscipline are things of yesteryear. There is no corruption or even the slightest sign of malfeasance in Barbados’ public administration. The Democratic Labour Party (DLP) machinery, under Prime Minister Freundel Stuart’s pragmatic and proactive leadership, has been sublime and purposeful. The DLP is well set under Stuart to be elected for a third term.

Clearly, the preceding statements point to the delusional disorder that has become associated with DLP spokespersons. That paragraph reads as fiction and the fantasy held by the ‘Sleeping Giant’. However, to ordinary Barbadians not steeped in the illusion being cast by the DLP’s unbelievable boasts, the DLP remains a party stupefied. The DLP is oblivious to the burdens facing Barbadians. Today, the people are crying out for better having reached the end of their resolve. Political pundits must ask what is prompting the loud cries of dismay being heard in almost every nook and cranny across Barbados? Why is the DLP’s rhetoric so much at odds with the actual mood of Barbadians?

In October 2015, it was stated by the then Governor of the Central Bank that “foreign reserves remain adequate, and economic policy and the future development of the economy remain firmly in our own hands.” Fifteen months later, not only has Barbados witnessed the wretched axing of that Central Bank Governor, but any positives drawn in relation to economic turnaround, have been badly diminished with the trends pointing in dangerous directions. The unsustainable printing of money and the mountainous debts are suffocating the economy and strangling the society.

Indeed, Barbados’ foreign reserves have been drastically depleted, falling to around 10 weeks’ stock. The Governor warned last September that: “We need to compensate for the large fiscal deficit of recent years, and to restore foreign reserves to levels that provide a cushion against future shocks.” Last month, he cautioned that “the reserves are what protect us against the devaluation of our currency,” and that our macroeconomic managers “need to dampen spending” to ensure that there is protection for “the country’s reserves of foreign exchange.” Advice ignored by the DLP administration.

This sluggish and bungling DLP government is imperiled by its weakness of inadequacy and ineffectiveness. The Stuart-led Cabinet has collectively failed to forge significant economic growth or diminish the uncertainty which has kept investors at bay and the society on edge. The Cabinet is clumsy at public policy and especially woeful with the macroeconomy. Plainly, the DLP administration with a degree of incompetence, has been unable to lift the Barbados nation to higher levels of achievement.

The DLP’s big shots, failing on several aspects of governance, are supplanting national interest with their crusade to save themselves. For example, last week culminated with the economy and the plight of Barbadian people being upstaged by the humiliation of the Governor of the Central Bank. The Prime Minister’s carefree phases, became another hint that he dreams on while the DLP’s tenure has become a burden too heavy for an increasing majority of Barbadians.

Responding to this disgusting state of affairs, last week the Leader of the Opposition and political leader of the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) – Mia Mottley – urged Barbadians to join in a National March of Disgust and Rally on the significant day of March 11th, 2017. Mottley’s concerns come after another sequence of the DLP’s normalised indiscipline.

As a reminder, one of Barbados’ finest prime ministers – JMGM ‘Tom’ Adams died in office on March 11th, 1985. Incidentally, there is another event – Reclaim Our Streets: Feminine Solidarity March – also planned for the afternoon of the march and rally. It would be remiss not to highlight that Tom Adams was pivotal in advancing the cause of women in Barbados. Between 1976 and 1985 he worked tirelessly towards legally ending the discrimination against women. Notwithstanding, Miss Mottley in a forthright but embracing tone which reflects the comparable magnetism of Adams, expressed to Barbadians that ‘enough is enough’. The people are no longer willing to suffer indignity or scarcity, and this chagrin has led to the announcement of a march signalling that enough is enough.

It is routine to hear men, women, and our youth daily lament and complain about Barbados’ rapid decline over a nine-year period since 2008. Even those from within the inner sanctuary of Cabinet, namely Dr David Estwick and Donville Inniss have been critical of the DLP’s actions that expose a sinister indiscipline within the Cabinet. Dr Estwick indicated that Barbados was heading in the wrong direction under the current Finance Minister, to the extent that Barbados’ “debt matrices have deteriorated significantly since 2010.” The more garrulous Inniss has been critical of the deplorable sight of garbage, the overladen bureaucratic nature of government, the water woes, the potholes and general poor state of roads, not to mention admitting to the rude silence exhibited by the Prime Minister on numerous issues which are critical to the wellbeing of the Barbadian people.

After almost two complete terms in office that are characterised by an unending set of myriad crises and failures, the DLP has reached the point where it no longer has the moral authority to be critical of any group or political party. Barbadians are complaining that PM Stuart repeatedly displays lack of empathy to those bedevilled with problems stemming from the DLP’s macroeconomic mismanagement. Bothersome to Barbadians is Stuart’s hugs to tourists, and speeches in New York, but silent contempt when there is local consternation.

Mia Mottley strongly contends that the Barbados society “can no longer put up with Mr. Stuart’s absurd pretences” of ignorance when it comes to serious issues affecting the population. On too many serious matters when hands-on leadership was required, the ignorance that ought to be punishable with laughter has been shamefully claimed by the Prime Minister. Mottley convincingly reinforced the observation that: “The Prime Minister of Barbados has once again given incontrovertible proof that he is thoroughly unfit to continue political leadership of Barbados.” Very few persons looking on or standing on the sidewalks will disagree with Mottley.

Surely, reckless omission epitomises the current Prime Minister, but annoys multiple thousands of Barbadians. Allegations of countless DLP infractions have surfaced; these are sufficiently nefarious as to damage the country’s reputation. Yet, PM Stuart revels in hush-hush and perplexing idiosyncrasies. Stuart has made procrastination and silence his most outstanding attributes. While these are personal habits that most likely developed over many years, his social crassness and political obnoxiousness are being construed as forms of disrespect to the populace. Stuart’s insensitive condition has become contagious, and has badly penetrated the Cabinet he leads. Undeniably, the apparent arrogance of Cabinet is most visible when falsehoods become the chosen tool to defend nine paltry years. No wonder many ‘Dems’ have been heard singing Gypsy’s – Captain the ship is sinking.

Captain this ship is sinking
Captain these seas are rough, oh yes
We gas tank almost empty
No electricity, we oil pressure reading low
Shall we abandon ship
Or shall we stay on it and perish slow
We doh know, we doh know
Captain you tell we what to do!

By way of comic relief, the DLP’s propaganda machinery is to launch a campaign to be called ‘Facts’ (maybe, preceded by the word alternative). This campaign is ironic given the experiences and realities daily afflicting Barbadians. Against a stern reluctance to meaningfully account for the true state of the Barbados economy, the DLP operatives are determined and operating like cavalry. The targets to be slashed are the Leader of the Opposition and the BLP, despite the arrival of new political parties.

The DLP’s General Secretary last week, for example, preferred to slice away at Mottley and the BLP instead of encourage the DLP’s leadership to reconnect with the people or call the elections. The typically calm George sobbingly got sweaty and whimpered ‘disruption’ and ‘opportunism’ at Mottley. The DLP spokesman is blind to the bondage felt by Barbadians as they reel from the weight of DLP-imposed taxes. Barbadians are disgusted with bad policies, secret deals, and lack of accurate information coming from PM Stuart and the mangled DLP administration.

Moreover, Ince’s worthless talk about the Barbadian dollar having no value, and the misguided young man’s claim that the BLP is engaging in fear-mongering are signs of the DLP’s worry. Donville Johnson, a jolly old chap suggested the calibre of candidates that the DLP will throw to the public are winners; but such pronouncements are distractions. The utterances are cleverly calculated to shroud out the DLP’s paltry performances and many broken manifesto pledges.

On page 1 of the DLP’s 2013 Manifesto, the document apart from calling for a return to office, reads: ‘FIRST TERM FOR PLANTING, SECOND TERM REAPING’. The highlighted catchphrase can reasonably be interpreted that by now, Barbadians would have seen the DLP deliver on jobs. Barbadians sacrificed so that they could reap their just rewards. Few persons would argue for a third DLP term when there has been no harvest. Instead, Barbados has become gripped in a dreadful situation. The national interest has fallen far behind the need of the DLP to hide its many flaws. The DLP’s main defence against a badly underperforming economy is cupped in blame, firings, distortion, and increased confusion.

Therefore, and rightfully seizing the moment, the Leader of the Opposition has called for a national march and rally. Mottley contends that: “The Prime Minister is clearly indifferent to the gravity of the crises” confronting Barbados. She further pleaded that “the time has come … for Barbadians from all walks of life to be given an opportunity to register their disgust at the state of affairs in this country.” While a protest march is not a tool regularly used in Barbados, it can be very effective as evidenced during the early 1990s.

The show of disgust over the prevailing situations that hurt pride and industry in Barbados is ultimately an opportunity for the nation’s people to set the tone before the next general election is called. With the prolonged suffering under the DLP, and the disaffection that comes from living ‘pay check to pay check’ or being unemployed, Barbadians are further disgusted. The DLP is in disarray, and is desperately trying to remain relevant.

On March 11th, the country would register the many ‘grievances and concerns which demand that something must be done’ to remedy an unbearable situation. Barbadians have become more audibly and visibly offended by the indifference of Prime Minister Freundel Stuart and the dismissiveness of his Cabinet. The nation is crying out for hope and real leadership. Yours truly will be marching to show disgust. All Barbadians, regardless of political persuasion, ought to get up, stand up, march!

(Dr George C. Brathwaite is a political consultant. Email: brathwaitegc@gmail.com )

78 comments

  • Dear Mr Brathwaite,

    You mention devaluation. We already got devaluation by excessive duties on imports, which makes me wonder why Barbados is still member of WTO. There are only a few other countries like Venezuela, Zimbabwe and North Korea with such high duties.

    Here is the true value of the Barbados dollar:

    BMW 535d in USA: 70,000 USD
    same car in Bim: 420,000 BBD

    Hence, the true value is: 1 USD = 6 BBD

    Another example:

    1 l milk in Europe: 0.60 EUR
    1 l milk in Bim: 7 BBD

    Hence, the true value is: 1 EUR = 11.67 BBD

    We do not need any “black” market value of the BBD, just look at the local prices. Such high prices are a typical sign of a doomed economy.

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  • Tron,

    This is called the Big Mac index: What is the price of a big mac in various countries; that gives s fairly accurate value of currency.
    I have said on a number of occasions, we have had internal devaluation. Our economists and media avoid the subject. Well done, Tron.

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  • @ Tron

    I tend to agree with you and that is why the economist will refer to nominal versus real value. Point well made by you and accepted.

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  • NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

    We could never understand why we are to be used for cheap political Brassbowlery

    How stupid and for how long do you expect that the public must act as a backdrop for raw political ambition?

    And when this set of miscreants gain power would they want to rely on the collective will of the people as they seek to do now?

    No, the BLP will again retreat to a place where economic POWER will be wielded from behind curtains. The same power elites will be able to get meeting – Bizzy Williams and ilk!

    This idiotic American bullshiite about march up and down like the Grand Ole Duke of York was always shiiite.

    Imagine, we as the ignorant American, elect people to do a job and then have to be calling their offices, writing letters, begging at branch offices ……….. marching, pleading with these f++kers for democratic crumbs, to do right by us. Only, idiots will do this.

    Where has all this marching gotten us …………………………… to do more marching ………….. until the next government starts to hide from us and do what the f==k they like…………. and we march again.

    Let MAM, the BLP, George Brathwaite, kiss our collective Brassbowl.

    Liked by 2 people

  • @Hal

    To be fair to the discussion should we not discuss internal devaluation vs currency?

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  • @ Pachamama

    Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet!

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  • David,
    We should discuss internal devaluation versus external devaluation. In terms of currency, it is nice to see that some people are now coming round to a suggestion made in one of my Notes….either going for a Caricom currency, or abandon the Bajan and use the Greenback as our currency.

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  • George Brathwaite

    Sweet shiite!

    You maybe well-credentialed but no less a babe

    In the service of others

    Barbados will never advance until it works out a way to rid itself of your majoritarian slavish mentality

    Walking around promoting a wicked political party with mal-intent

    Same shiite, over and over again

    Liked by 1 person

  • On devaluation:

    The current peg 1:2 provides little for common Barbadians, since an external devaluation would go hand in hand with lower duties for imports (I assume, at least if the legislator acts on a rational base, but who knows?). External devaluation would not just work like adding present devaluation (international) and new devaluation (external). However, we would still feel to some unknown extent a higher overall devaluation.

    The current peg 1:2 is only fully beneficial for those converting their BBD into USD AND transferring their USD to offshore accounts in order to consume their USD abroad, e.g. for villas and cars: They get an overvalued price for BBD and can enjoy low foreign consumer prices at the same time. In other words: The current peg mainly privileges the small group of rich people on this island, using BBD for capital flight.

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  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    Pacha is right…all ya will get as ya got now is DLP for 10 years, then enters BLP……and a repeat performance…..because neither of them are creative or have any vision…outside their usual skullduggery with the minorities.

    …..that yardfowl thing is also killing the country, the people need to stop listening to the ministers, journalists, economists, newspapers and the warmed over political crap they spew and recognize their treachery. …..it is real.

    …,.,..and always do your own reseach, so ya can tell them to their faces that they are liars….that is what the internet is for, to do your own research.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Violet Beckles CUP

    time 9:15 am

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  • Violet Beckles CUP

    reads 9:15am=1016am

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  • If you are living in a market place,
    And you’re no buyer or seller.
    You’ll find yourself left in space,
    Subject to be bought or sold.
    If you are living in a tenant yard,
    And you are not the land owner.
    You’ll get a notice from your landlord,
    To leave sooner or later.

    So what you need is: liberation!
    Everyone need it: liberation!
    The young and old they need: liberation!
    Let’s come together for the: liberation!
    If you are in bondage: liberation!
    If you are not free you need: liberation!
    Let’s unite for the: liberation!
    Everyone need it: liberation!

    If you are dwelling on a piece of land,
    And are not the land owner.
    You can be sure that the government man,
    Is gonna label you a squatter.
    If you are an alien in a far country,
    And you are treated as a stranger.
    You don’t belong to that society,
    You could a end up in danger.

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  • Would a currency devaluation force Barbados to develop its export sector?

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  • Is it reasonable for John Public to ask what caused the public falling out between the former Governor, MoF and the Board of the Central Bank?

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  • Get over da shat already.

    This is a lot of Bajan bumbaclot. Every pissing election time we hear this urine from an opposition and the contra swill from the PIP.

    Somebody said that we all’s entitled to Freedom of Expression so leh de man express nah. He gine talk he talk and it gine sound good.

    Who we gine call…Ghostbusters, Grenville or Lynette?

    Unless and until one a we fellas got anudder recipe den I really don’t see how we gine change de Georges dem (and he is no relation a mine) from offering dem sweet ‘tasting’ pig bowels.

    It is meaningless until we mek it got meaning.

    I too like de part bout As a reminder, one of Barbados’ finest prime ministers – JMGM ‘Tom’ Adams and he being pivotal in advancing the cause of women in Barbados.

    He mighta do dat in trut but for some mighty strange reason I sorta remember my boy Tom as a fella who did like to empower he ladies in a more seminal way.

    But who is me to say dat he was no maguffy for women’s rights too!

    Dat is like de fella who wife fell in a river and he pray to the good Father for salvation. Yah see one day previously while cutting firewood he axe fell too and God had saved he. In fact the Father had gone in the river 3 times and come out with a gold and then silver axe and each time de honest fella said ‘no that, isn’t mine, Father’ until the third time when his old-iron axe was presented. The Lord was so impressed with dat honesty he give the woodcutter all 3 a dem. Chah-ching.

    So now months later when the wife fall and the Lord dive in and pull out Beyonce first, the fella tremble and say when asked, ‘Yes, that is de wife.’

    What dishonesty, bellowed the mighty Voice, I am so disappointed. But Father, forgive me but I thought that you might bring out Shakira next if I said no and then after her my lovely wife. But I is a poor man and can’t provide and support 3 wives and I also can’t share my wife wid no one as I love her so much. So I took the first one offered.

    He who knows all, cud only but smile.

    Now, yah hear man lie. That is lie. But sweet, sweet as shat.

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  • David,

    We still have a situation in Barbados in which credit unions, banks and credit unions are offering sub-prime loans to people to buy cars, while the central bank and government remain silent.
    Just look at the history of the sub-prime mortgage problems in the US, replace houses with cars and you see the extent of the problem. People who cannot afford to buy a car are being lent money to buy cars.
    The end result of this reckless lending is more cars on the streets, thus more accidents. The island is in chaos and our leaders do not have any answers.
    Ban loans for cars.

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  • @Hal

    We need to focus on the Payday loans entities. We understand these are not regulated.

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  • David,

    Payday lenders are a problem, but they lend small amounts of money. Nevertheless, they should be regulated. However, it is the sub-prime car enders who are the major problem.

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  • @Hal

    You are some of the biggest lenders are the car dealers?

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  • VoB has been actively inviting the public to submit suggestions to compile a People’s Manifesto. What a thing!

    Good job on their part eh Bush Tea?

    >

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  • David,
    Yes. The big sub-prime lenders are now the flies in the ointment. And not a word is said.

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  • Anyone who was on the fence and listened to the MOF yesterday has to be totally bewildered that one man could lie so boldfacedly to the citizens of this country and think that we are ignorant.

    The man convinced himself that all is well…….Barbados is on a growth path, investments are coming, he is going to force people to deposit foreign monies with the CBB.

    This is after everybody who cares about this country including Adrian Loveridge told this government that they gave away so many concessions to Butch Stewart and that he was not bringing in the foreign exchange to Barbados. The idiots now realise that it is true yet we are taking up $7million US that we can hardly spare and paying Delta to bring in guests specially for Sandals.

    All the Stinkliar should have said yesterday is that he realises that he cannot handle the job, that he is in over his head and that every and anything he has done has only resulted in failure to the point where the economy is in a deep crisis and therefore I am out of here.

    That is what we wanted to hear from the liar.

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  • @HA
    “either going for a Caricom currency, or abandon the Bajan and use the Greenback as our currency.”
    I am surprised after the Euro and the ‘Greek experience’ (one may also include Spain-Portugal-Italy vs Germany-Netherlands) you would suggest a Caricom currency. The Greeks, like the Bajans, loaded up on deficits fueled largely by ‘public employment’, but couldn’t use devaluation as an economic booster.
    Given the health and experience of other Caricom member states, I am unsure a currency union could be anything but a huge risk.
    Certain sectors, tourism and real estate, already use the $US.
    I note in Jamaica, some fixed payments (eg Rent) are now variable, as they are tied to the $US, and will vary monthly as their own currency varies to the $US.

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  • Sunshine Sunny Shine

    @Panchama

    You are so right in your comments about these so call leaders. They serve up the same shite every election time and ignorant bajans lap it up like mango sauce.

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  • Northernobserver,
    You do not fully understand the Greek problem; there were three: people not paying their taxes; a massive public sector payroll; and the predatory Germans lending hem cheap money to buy German products.
    The reality is that we must move towards a stronger Caricom, a federation, if you like. |Unless we do we will always be living from hand to mouth.
    If you are talking about the euro, we must move towards a United States of Europe. Britain voting on June 23 for Brexit is the biggest economic suicide note in history. A United States of Europe will wipe the floor with the US and China.

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  • @Tron
    one may similarly ask….IF the GoB were to ‘ban car imports for a year’, what effect would this have on Gov revenues? It is because of high duties that imports are also a major source of public revenue.
    Using your BMW example, what portion of that selling price goes to a)manufacturer b)dealer c) GoB duties and taxes? I’ll bet c) is the highest.

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  • @HA…lol
    “there were three: people not paying their taxes; a massive public sector payroll; and the predatory Germans lending hem cheap money to buy German products”, so insert China for Germany and you have Barbados?

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  • @ David
    VoB has been actively inviting the public to submit suggestions to compile a People’s Manifesto. What a thing!
    Good job on their part eh Bush Tea?
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Good job shiite!!
    They just want a Ten-Point Plan – just like their idol BU…. 🙂

    BTW don’t VOB belong to Trinidadians?
    Nobody need a national manifesto more than T&T ….although we are close…

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  • Northernobserver,

    You cannot ban car imports. The WTO will go mad. But Barbadians do not have to buy them.
    About China, what sweetens goat mout….
    This silly government is under the belief that the Chinese are malleable. They live in a dream world.

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  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    Some years ago….Bermuda limited how many cars each household can have because there were too many cars on the island causing gridlock and congestion.

    http://bit.ly/2lvBy9a

    WTO cannot tell any government not to limit car imports.

    “Cars were not allowed in Bermuda until 1946. Today Bermuda has a large number of private cars, almost one for every two inhabitants; however, only residents are allowed to drive them. This is largely because, with close to 300,000 visitors a year, allowing car rental on one of the world’s most densely populated islands would quickly bring traffic to a standstill, as well as bankrupt the island’s taxi industry.

    Car prices are much higher than in the United States, Canada, and Europe, due to heavy import duties, and residents are also limited to one car per household.

    The size of cars is also restricted (due to the narrow and winding roads on Bermuda), meaning that many models popular in the United States, Canada, and Europe are not available in Bermuda. Only the Governor and Premier are exempt from these restrictions.

    There is no car hire (car rental); visitors may only rent low-power motor scooters; they may also use the extensive public bus system, or take taxis. The highest speed limit anywhere on the island is 35 km/h (approximately 20 mph), and it is lower in built-up and other congested areas.”

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  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    “Car prices are much higher than in the United States, Canada, and Europe, due to heavy import duties, and residents are also limited to one car per household.”……in Bermuda.

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  • millertheanunnaki

    @ David February 28, 2017 at 12:10 PM #
    “Would a currency devaluation force Barbados to develop its export sector?”

    The only viable export sector in Barbados is ‘tourism’. Since most of the inputs to that industry is sourced from overseas and paid for with foreign-generated income the effects of devaluation ought to be relatively neutral as long as the cost of local labour remains at existing rates.

    The main objective in recommending devaluation for Barbados is to make much higher the cost of living high off the conspicuous consumption imported hog and act as a deterrent to easy living and laziness by forcing Bajans to live within its forex-earning capacity and not on other people’s money.

    Bajans would now have to earn their way in the very competitive world just like Jamaicans and Guyanese have been doing for the last 30 odd years.

    Importers would be forced to make ‘rational’ decisions in an environment of forex scarcity and would find themselves having to pay in advance or on a COD forex basis before access to foreign goods and services can be arranged and delivered.

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  • ‘Every Bajan A Winner’ In BLP’s 2003 Manifesto

    The 2003 election manifesto of the Barbados Labour Party was unveiled this week by Prime Minister Owen Arthur. Entitled ‘Every Bajan a Winner’, it contains several pledges on taxation, which the party has committed itself to reducing on several fronts over the next few years.

    “Insofar as Barbados will function as part of a Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME) after 2004, we must structure our tax system to be the most competitive in the region, and to make Barbados the preferred business centre in the Caribbean,” the manifesto stated, continuing:

    “After 2005, our tax system must accommodate removal of import duties in accordance with FTAA, European Union, and WTO trade agreements. Our fiscal system must also feature attractive incentives to spur personal initiative, promote high levels of savings and investments, and provide fair and reasonable returns as stimuli to private investment.”

    Major tax developments planned by a future Owen Arthur administration include proposals to:

    Increase personal allowance from $15,000 to $25,000 over four years by annual increments of $2,500, starting in income year 2004.
    Reduce the basic rate of income tax from 25% to 22.5% in 2003 and to 20% in 2004.
    Reduce the top rate applicable to taxable income in excess of $24,000 from 40% to 37.5% in income year 2005, and from 37.5% to 35% in income year 2006.

    A BLP Government will review the personal income allowance in 2007, and increase it as financial circumstances allow.

    The manifesto continued: ‘We amended the Income Tax Act to reduce the Corporation Tax from the current 40% to 25%, by 2006. The next stage in our reform of Corporation Tax will be the removal of the differential between rates paid by domestic enterprises and those in the International Business and Financial sectors.’

    ‘Under the Small Business Development Act introduced by the BLP, small businesses pay tax on profit at a rate of 25%. The next BLP administration will reduce the Small Business Tax Rate to 20% when the General Corporation Tax rate reaches 25% in 2006.’

    ‘To encourage home building, we will establish a special corporation tax rate of 20% for firms engaged in housing construction.

    ‘To fulfil our obligations under the FTAA and WTO agreements, Barbados will, from 2005, begin phasing out import duties. This will be a major tax adjustment, as import duties currently range between 20% and 45%, and yield $170 million in revenue.’

    ‘To propel our thrust to make Barbados a First World society, we must ensure that information technology is available to all Barbadians, as a learning tool and as a business option. To this end, a BLP Government will remove the VAT on computers and computer supplies.’

    The election manifesto continued:’We will exempt the first $125,000 in property value from payment of land tax, place a ceiling on the value on which land tax will be charged and permit property owners to pay annual land tax charges in quarterly instalments.’

    ‘A BLP Government will reduce the property transfer tax vendor rate from the current 10% to 7.5%. Whereas existing legislation provides for payment of property transfer tax on leases in excess of one year, we will amend the Property Transfer Tax Act and Stamp Duty Act to exempt leases of up to 25 years.

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  • another IMF head (former) found guilty
    https://www.ft.com/content/7f93082e-f9ed-11e6-bd4e-68d53499ed71

    when will they stop hiring ex-politicans!!!!

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  • David February 28, 2017 at 12:57 PM
    Heard on the radio today, an announcement from Courts Barbados Ltd, that they are now lending up to $1500 in cash. Probably on the same Hire-Purchase terms. For Bajans who have to resort to these usurious Fast Cash cash, Pay Day and Courts B’dos offers, the Barbadian Dollar has been long been devalued.
    Modern day coolie men after 50 +years of independence.
    Pride and Industry.

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  • @ Prodigal Son February 28, 2017 at 1:46 PM #

    ….”Anyone who was on the fence and listened to the MOF yesterday has to be totally bewildered that one man could lie so boldfacedly to the citizens of this country and think that we are ignorant.
    The man convinced himself that all is well…….Barbados is on a growth path, investments are coming, he is going to force people to deposit foreign monies with the CBB”.

    Was the MOF referring to the facilitation (by law) for global elites to set up their own “PRIVATE TRUST COMPANY” here as investments or another form of off-shore banking or otherwise?

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  • George

    Nobody is reading you.

    This march is going to be a bust

    Yuh know Bajans, they almost never show up, not even for cricket!

    A failed march is a soft power, political defeat, for MAM.

    Her petticoat will show.

    And her political advisers like you should be fired.

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  • @NorthernObserver and WWC

    c) is correct. But remember: We have no problem printing BBD, but insufficient access to foreign currency. Does solution c) solve our problem with foreign currency reserves?

    1) Yes, to the extent it works like a ban for local private persons to buy imported goods;
    2) no to the extent it works as an obstacle for local businesspersons who attract tourism or offshore investments;
    3) and no to the extent the taxed money is paid to civil servants who demand imported consumer goods imported in USD. Consider they are also affected by point 1).

    There is a circulus vitiosus built in at point 3): Civil servants are also taxed when they demand imported goods. The taxes are transferred to them as salaries and the cycle starts again and again and again …

    Like

  • FJS is the luckiest politician

    This clash of events could only help

    a man who should never have been PM

    Like

  • millertheanunnaki

    @ Hal Austin February 28, 2017 at 9:44 AM

    “We should discuss internal devaluation versus external devaluation. In terms of currency, it is nice to see that some people are now coming round to a suggestion made in one of my Notes….either going for a Caricom currency, or abandon the Bajan and use the Greenback as our currency.”

    “Hal Austin February 28, 2017 at 1:35 PM
    Alvin,
    The Greenback is de facto legal tender in Barbados. We must ban its use.”

    What a laugh, (at you) Hal!
    There is a movie titled “Shallow Hal” the main character of which can easily describe you as far as your contribution on macro economics and monetary matters as they pertain to Barbados.

    You just can’t tell your twisted economic elbow from your fat financial arse, can you now Hal?

    One minute you want to ban the greenback as the de facto currency of the realm. Next minute you are recommending it as the official currency of Barbado(e)s.

    Using your vast journalistic experience in all matters financial please explain to us BU dummies (in a Bushman-type lesson format) how you would go about making the “greenback” the currency of the realm.

    Don’t you know that before you can ‘rightfully’ use other people’s property you first have to earn that right?

    Are you planning to ‘electronically’ print counterfeit greenbacks the same way the disgraced former Guv of CB was circulating unearned monopoly money in a false economy of low productivity where output of goods and services was not in sync with the foreign demand for those same goods and services and further impacted by an excessive local demand for the consumption of unaffordable foreign-made goods and services?
    Where would little ‘living-above-its-means’ Bim earn these greenbacks when its last remaining working cylinder in its engine of foreign income generation is made not in the grand ole US of A but in older cold Blighty?

    Barbado(e)s has long past its sell-by-date in trying to compete with places like Bermuda Bahamas and the Caymans.

    Little England’s only salvation is to bite the proverbial bullet and go back home to the protective embrace of its mother country and- with subserviently submissive remorse for being a spoilt child who was once given much independence- ask for forgiveness and mend the broken trident with a £ as the trademark of penitence.

    What say you dear Hal, the native son of man from the Bajan Ivy and sojourner in Blighty land as a still not integrated nouveau arrivant?

    Like

  • LOL @ Pacha
    You are right ….
    One wonders now if Mia is not trying to kill two stones with one bird…. in leggings.

    Like

  • George,
    “…failed to forge significant economic growth …”
    What figure do you propose that would constitute “significant”, taking into consideration the world economic performance at the moment?
    Miller, the greenback is defect legal tender allover the world.

    Like

  • Why the hell would Mia, in February, schedule a march for the second week in March?
    Two whole weeks to organise a shiite march?
    How long will she need to fix the broke economy and convert 275000 brass bowls?
    Why not strike while the iron is hot…?
    Why give the DLP two whole weeks to pre-empt the march?

    …and then why clash with another march that SHE helped to organise?
    Some shiite is fishy….

    Nothing in this God-forsaken place is straightforward ….

    Like

  • millertheanunnaki

    @ Alvin Cummins February 28, 2017 at 9:05 PM

    “Miller, the greenback is defect legal tender allover the world.”

    So is prostitution along with marijuana and cocaine.

    Like

  • Bushie

    This march should have happened while the CB case was in court.

    The management of this march is a dis-qualifier from managing the public affairs.

    As we know, there is little difference between the two.

    Like

  • Maybe MAM and FJS wukking in quo!

    Like

  • millertheanunnaki

    @Alvin Cummins February 28, 2017 at 9:05 PM

    But seriously though Alvin, aren’t you hanging your head in abject shame to see how your administration has sunk to so low a level in managerial competence as to having to scrape the bottom of the barrel and beg the paro and reformed drunkard OSA to help them steer the economic ship of State from the sea rocks of disaster?

    Your days of ‘pompasetting’ on BU are over. Time to go back under your rock of shame and scandal in the DLP family of disgrace.

    Like

  • @Hal Austin February 28, 2017 at 8:57 AM “This is called the Big Mac index”

    No big Macs in Barbados,

    but there has always been a dig difference in what things cost in Barbados and what they cost in the U.S. or the U.K, or Japan etc. It was so in the early 70’s when I first visited the U.S. and it is so now.

    It may be because Barbados is a teeny, tiny market.

    It may be because all goods coming into Barbados have to be expensively shipped, or flown great distances.

    For example a Big Mac (and all other foods) may cost about the same in London, New York, Toronto, Bonn, and Beijing, but may cost a lot more in Canada’s Nunuvut, Northwest Terrotories and Yukon, which like Barbados are far from big commercial centers, and where it is also expensive to ship or fly food great distances to very small populations.

    Anybody who believes that a Big Mac will ever cost the same in Barbados as in New York is living in la-la land.

    Like

  • @Hal Austin February 28, 2017 at 12:46 PM “We still have a situation in Barbados in which credit unions, banks and credit unions are offering sub-prime loans to people to buy cars…Ban loans for cars.”

    Since these are subprime loans does this mean that banks and credit unions are repossessing cars because people are defaulting on their loans?

    Not so fast Hal. Maybe some people actually need these cars to get to WORK? It makes no sense to ban car loans until public transportation is working so well that people feel no need to borrow money to buy a car.

    Fix public transportation first.

    Like

  • @Simple Simon

    Shipping a container 40t across a whole ocean to Bim is just 5000 USD = 125 USD / 1t.

    Like

  • @ David and BU readers and bloggers
    After reading tonight’s pages 2 and 3 (Editorial and two stories) on Barbados Today, I had to do some thinking and reflection.

    Am I missing something, or is it fair to conclude that with the DLP through Chris Sinckler crawling back to OSA, it is an admission that the BLP administrations between 1994 and 2008 were NOT to blame for the current economic crisis facing the country?
    I guess that maybe part of it, although the scenario fits perfectly with a quest for the DLP to somehow get a third term, is the nature of real politick.
    All possibilities, but I very much will battle to ensure that Barbadians are saved the embarassment and disappointment of another DLP term – Arthur or no Arthur in the pouch. It appears without full details at this time that Stuart and his Cabinet are better able to walk back on politics than on the fact of diverging from failed economic policies.It is truly more laughable than sinister.
    Yet if indeed Barbados is the priority, any other possible agenda will be pushed aside by the people of kiss and make up, all will be well.
    Now is the real chance to find out just how much as a people Barbadians are educated and learn from harsh lessons. Blessings all, and Barbados forever.

    Like

  • fortyacresandamule

    Commodity prices have been on a decline, inflation in Barbados is low relative to the USA and the US$ has been strengthening against all the major currency. All of the above make import relatively neutral or cheap in Barbados. One of the main reason import items are so expense in Bim is because of the huge RENT charged by the few suppliers of these goods.

    Like

  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    “There is a circulus vitiosus built in at point 3): Civil servants are also taxed when they demand imported goods. The taxes are transferred to them as salaries and the cycle starts again and again and again “…

    Tron…civil servants ought to stop wanting imported goods, they are not necessities, as they will learn, they only need necessities to survive.

    “One minute you want to ban the greenback as the de facto currency of the realm. Next minute you are recommending it as the official currency of Barbado(e)s.”

    I have no idea what gets into Hal with his contradictory comments, it’s very disturbing that he would spend a whole day doing this, to what end, he cant get pass certain people with that, if you hold an opinion, at least be consistent, but this bait and switch from one hour to the next is destructive.

    Something is definitely off.

    Barbados will definitely have to make a choice Miller….and real soon.

    Like

  • Simple Simon,

    Yes. The cars are being re-possessed when the borrowers default. No, very few need cars to get to work. Stand at any roundabout at rush hour and see the number of cars with only the drivers in them.
    With a proper public transport system the need for private vehicles will be reduced. Sub-prime car loans is a scam.

    Like

  • Simple Simon,

    In professional economics it is called the Big Mac index. I don’t care if they have big macs in Barbados or not. I am simply stating what the comparison prices are called.

    Like

  • Jethro,

    There are alternative policies, Jethro. I know you are a Nobel Laureate in economics. I am for a Caricom federation – and have said it on a number of occasions in this forum – in which a currency union will be part of the development. If that is not on the table, the Barbados government has to decide either to ban the Greenback as de facto ‘legal’ tender, or adopt it as the currency in Barbados.
    I know you are so keen to criticise that your cognitive weaknesses get in the way.
    Like you, I am not an expert on finance or economics. Plse forgive my ignorance.
    But, here is something I worked out for myself: if the government has no control over the amount of US dollars used for retail, it means it has lost control of (M2) money supply.
    With Janet Yellen effectively controlling monetary policy, it means we are wasting money on the central bank.
    If you go to Paradise Island in the Bahamas the effective currency is the US dollar, not the Bahamian dollar. Do what Ecuador has done.

    Like

  • George Brathwaite

    If these events were the reverse, you would welcome them

    Your mealy-mouthed disagreement based on an ‘educated’ population is doublespeak

    What education, mis-education you mean?

    Even that rock will not hide you

    Then you slithered from that rock and raised the new possibility, for you, that Arthur’s BLP destroyed the economy.

    Well, there’s always a first for a political snake to shed its skin and pretend to be on the other side.

    George! Do you see why a guillotine is a necessary instrument to bring about social order?

    Like

  • @ Pacha
    George does not remember that what Stinkliar is doing now in welcoming Owen, is the same shiite that the BLP did in welcoming Mascoll.
    Six is half dozen – and they are all the VERY SAME shiite…… and will produce the same shiite results.

    @ Hal
    What Caricom Federation what??!!
    Lotta shiite…
    Bushie again calls on you to concentrate on asking the questions …and leave the answers to others. You hear your albino colleagues tossing around a lotta shiite terms that they barely grasp, and come here looking to impress us, but you must remember that there is a whacker in this cauldron called BU….

    You live in an EU that has failed and calling on us to start the same shiite?

    Like

  • Miller;
    Above there was a slight typo. It should have been “defect”..hope you picked it up;

    “…marijuana and cocaine.” are illegal. The green back has not replaced the Barbados dollar, but they are accepted as legal tender at the peg value.

    Like

  • fortyacresandamule

    @Al. Just a reminder. There is no true nobel medal given in the field of Economics. It’s a fraud. Alfred Nobel did not list the dismal science in his will to be awarded a prize .

    Like

  • millertheanunnaki

    @ Alvin Cummins March 1, 2017 at 7:35 AM
    “…marijuana and cocaine.” are illegal. The green back has not replaced the Barbados dollar, but they are accepted as legal tender at the peg value.”

    No, Alvin!

    You can’t trade in US$ unless you are registered as an authorised dealer legally permitted to buy and sell foreign currencies.

    If you bring US$ into Barbados or accept it as a form of payment to settle locally undertaken business transactions you are legally required to present it to an authorised dealer (not the drug dealer) in exchange for local currency.

    If what you have posited were true then there should be no holdup to the establishment of a duty-free zone where residents can shop provided they pay in foreign currencies mainly US$.

    Can you tell us what is blocking the opening up of such a lucrative zone to attract US$ and which was scheduled to be up and running since December 2016?

    Like

  • What March the dlp has put a spoke in Mia Wheel having OSA as gran Marshall of economic affairs
    Cant beat that with a ten thousand marching band
    Mia needs to get back to the drawing board call her troops out for emergency resuscitation

    Like

  • @ angela…
    Have you really carefully considered the change from AC’s to AS’s?

    Do you understand the fodder you are creating for Miller?
    Can you handle the inevitable teasing of Vincent….?

    Luckily, you can anticipate that Bushie will go easy with you on the whacker…
    LOL
    …you can ‘anticipate’ that….
    Whether it is true or not ….may be too complex for a donkey to work out…
    LOL
    ha ha ha

    Like

  • Bush Tea,
    I take it that in your usual way you are not a big fan of a Caricom federation? By the way, I am also a big supporter of a United States of Europe. And, if it matters, for an African Federation.

    Like

  • millertheanunnaki

    @ angela Skeete March 1, 2017 at 2:09 PM

    Ac, now hiding behind that asinine sobriquet (‘a s’), we keep telling you it is not the actions or inactions of MAM, MIA or even the BLP under any other leader that will bring down your discredited and incompetent administration.

    Not even under a real Mugabe-type OSA should he be invited back to be a five-star general, dictator and grand Emperor of the BLP should some inevitable fate of Nature attend earlier than the present incumbent would wish for (just think about 2010 and D T’s mortality) would represent sufficient bedlam of confusion to pull down the giant pillars of sleepy DLP Samson power.

    What will be your administration’s downfall is a lack of confidence by your banker of last resort and the financial markets leprous view of your country’s ability to cut and contrive to be able payback both your long-term loans and now maxed out credit card.

    There is only one way that leads to a place beginning with the letter “D”.

    OSA is just tricking you guys to get his way in his blinkered goal of vindictiveness.
    Don’t fall for it. Should he not achieve his nasty goal you will see how fast his false patriotic fervour dissipates into total disinterest should there be a changing of the guard from ‘blue’ yellow to red in white.

    Just look at his track record in remaining on the battlefield to fight when the chips are down and things are not going his political way. As long as things are not given to him on a platter he takes up his bat and ball and pull up stumps to call it a coward’s day.
    Just look what happened in the 2oo8 and 2013 battles for ample evidence of his cowardly ‘deserting’ habit.

    Ask yourself this pertinent question:
    If MIA was such an awfully wicked witch with megalomaniac tendencies why did he run away from the political battle?

    By reneging on his moral responsibility to his former party and the national interest he effectively allowed the DLP to do as they like in brining the same country he wants to save today to its shameful knees of beggar of first resort.

    Like

  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    AS’s it is Bushman…lol

    Like

  • @ Hal
    Bush Tea,
    I take it that in your usual way you are not a big fan of a Caricom federation?
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Ya got THAT right.
    Bushie is NOT a big fan of ANY shiite….
    Be it Caricom shiite, EU shiite, albino shiite or Bajan shiite.

    Like doggie doo, such effluents attempt to contaminate the bushman’s lawn, but when the whacker kicks in, ….every thing gone flying boss

    LOL
    Bushie don’t wait for the shit to pile up to reach the fan
    …. Bushie hits it with the whacker EARLY….on the ground.

    Caricom has been under serious attack by the whacker now from EARLY days….
    LOTTA Shiite…
    TOTAL nonsense and complete waste of resources for us – and completely irrelevant to our interests.

    EU is different …because those are ‘albino focused’ people whose idea of ‘success’ is to kill /subjugate / enslave everyone else. If they could harness enough resources to create a World Empire then they can dream of another 1000 year Reich.
    This is not a practical plan of course, but what else can albino-centric cultures dream of…?

    ….but David must be tired of hearing the Bushman on this topic…..
    Owen too…. ha ha ha
    …and ESPECIALLY Enuff.

    Like

  • @Bushie

    Can you tell OSA not to blame social media for sharing a story that was posted by some website? His job is to deny it when it appears.

    Like

  • @Alvin Cummins March 1, 2017 at 7:35 AM “It should have been “defect”

    CORRECTION: de facto

    Like

  • Miller’
    You said: “…Can you tell us what is blocking the opening up of such a lucrative zone to attract US$ and which was scheduled to be up and running since December 2016?
    December?That was just two months ago. Patience man. By the way, why are you castigating OSA? I remember what took place when he decided to leave the Party, and the epithets cast by people like you. Why did he leave anyhow? Why is he sitting as an Independent? Why did you find it so difficult to reconcile? In chess the King is the most protected piece on the board. How come “King” Arthur could not be protected?Did the queen capture all? She is the only piece on the board, with complete freedom of movement.
    Still time to get off this devaluation kick. How much do you have “investing” and waiting to be traded; U.S. dollars I mean. How much were you hoping to profit by, with a devaluation. Hold on to it.

    Like

  • Simple Simon, correction noted and accepted.

    Like

  • @Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger March 1, 2017 at 4:21 AM “civil servants ought to stop wanting imported goods…”

    Really?

    Some of those coveted imported goods include, vaccines, infant formula, lumber, stoves, refrigerators, medicines, clothing, food, fuel.

    But you know how greedy human beings are. They feel that they must eat 3 times a day, and they insist in not sleeping outdoors, and they haven’t learnt take the deaths of their babies with equanimity, and when their surgeons are operating those good for noting civil servants insist that the surgeon must use anesthesia…instead of getting 3 or 4 strong men to hold down the patient and just chopping off the bad bits with a Collins.

    Lousy, greedy, good for nothing people.

    Like

  • @ David
    Can you tell OSA not to blame social media for sharing a story that was posted by some website? His job is to deny it when it appears.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Are you serious?
    Ya mean he missed to opportunity to quote Mark Twain about how “reports of his death have been greatly exaggerated”….

    How disappointing of Arthur… You know Miller would have never missed that chance… 🙂

    LOL
    Bushie had that opportunity a few years ago …directly to a then still grieving acquaintance …..
    Sweet!!!

    Like

  • @ Simple Simon
    “It should have been “defect” …CORRECTION: de facto
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Why don’t you leave Alvin alone ….especially when he is correct for once nuh…!!!

    ‘Defect’ is a good way to describe the US dollar and its widespread usage currently…
    It’s value is predicated on the USA Army’s ability and willingness to enforce that value. The USA ‘god’ and ‘brilliant genius’, Henry Kissinger negotiated the arrangement with Saudi Arabia where oil could ONLY be traded in US $. This means that who-ever wants oil, …NEEDS US $$$ badly….

    ANY and EVERY one who has challenged this position so far, has ended up branded as ‘terrorists’ …and dead…with Saddam and Gaddafi being two of the most outstanding victims.

    Unfortunate for this sweet arrangement that allows unlimited printing of dollars, (and protects the House of Saudi – no matter what…) the US military is no longer seen as able to do as it wishes… and China, Russia and a few other countries are actively putting things in place to end the “US $$$ sugar”….
    Keep you eyes on BRICS…

    When that day comes, the US dollar (and those tied thereto, will be worth EXACTLY …shit..!

    “Defect” is therefore a very good word….

    Like

  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    Lol…and with trump giving the military bogus orders and then blaming them when everything goes tits up and people die…..that is going to happen sooner rather than later.

    The US dollar is not looking so attractive in the last 2 weeks, too much uncertainty…gotta walk back the suggestion of adopting the US in Barbados. .

    Like

  • Well Well & Consequences Observing Blogger

    “Really?”

    Simppe,..you know full well what you listed falls under necessities and not cpveted luxury items, luxury items are unnecessary, not necessities.

    Like

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